PASSAGES: Shakira Sidelined by Throat
SPACED: Celine Dion isn't likely to have her style cramped in the dressing room for her new Las Vegas show. The Canadian songstress, who just launched a three-year appearance at Caesars Palace, has 2,400 square feet of backstage space to stretch out in, reports Ananova. The "mini-apartment" -- which holds dining, living and massage rooms, an office for manager-hubby Rene Angelil, four giant plasma-screen TVs and its own sound system -- is larger by 600 feet than the space allotted to tiger-taming wild men Siegfried and Roy, the news service quotes British mag Hello! as saying.
REJECTED: Director Brett Ratner has bailed out of the upcoming Warner Bros. film "Superman," citing casting difficulties. The move leaves the studio with neither a director nor a star for its superhero flick, which is apparently still (though somewhat improbably) scheduled to begin filming in August. Ratner had met with big-name contenders Brendan Fraser and Josh Hartnett, but had apparently had trouble convincing his Warner bosses to go with Ratner's own choice for the Man of Steel: "Guiding Light" star Matthew Bomer.
PACED: Country kicker Toby Keith has passed the million-ticket milestone for his U.S. concert tour, which began last fall and is slated to wrap up at the end of the month, reports Launch.com. The 42-year-old singer -- whose current album, "Unleashed," features his controversial post-9/11 song "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)" -- was just named best country artist in Playboy's 47th annual music poll, published in the mag's April 2003 edition. Keith, whom Pollstar magazine also tapped as the No. 1 country music ticket seller for 2002, is slated to host the CMT Flameworthy 2003 Video Music Awards on April 7.
SUED: Onetime brat-packer Anthony Michael Hall has been sued by insurance company Chubb for failing to disclose a "mental illness," reports the New York Post's Page Six. The insurer paid out $612,000 to producers of Hall's TV series, "The Dead Zone," when Hall checked into a hospital for a day to treat his bipolar disorder, halting filming. Now the insurer wants its money back -- because, it says, Hall failed to mention the illness on a disclosure form that asked if he had been "under a doctor's care for any physical or mental condition during the past five years."